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Joel: There’s so much… (The Swiss Affair, by Emylia Hall) #TWHST

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by Cynthia T. Luna in Blog, Books I Read

The Swiss Affair by Emylia HallI warned you last week that I would be drawing a #TWSHT from The Swiss Affair by Emylia Hall once more. Well, here it is.

This quote happened to be delivered by the protagonist’s main love interest. The one Hadley Dunn is really into. Everything is mildly off about this man–but all Hadley can see is everything that’s so, so, so right about him.

Ah… young love.

Joel is an American in Europe, a university professor of literature —her university professor, who is passionate about everything Hemingway. So it doesn’t go unnoticed that she shares the name of a late, celebrated, American author’s brightest flame. As it turns out, Joel takes a shine to Hadley too, and the two characters dance around each other, like proverbial moths to a flame.

Who is the moth? Who is the flame?

Well, that part is ambiguous in the book. And definitely ambiguous in this scene. Joel and Hadley spent the day skiing and they are back in the chalet, next to a roaring fire, feeling like “a normal couple”. But as I said, there’s something off about the moment, and the whole off feeling is communicated in this scene…

The next quote that follows from Joel is:

“You’re bright white. You’re the kind of girl a man looks at and sees the worst of himself looking back…”

But she doesn’t want to hear any of it. Hadley wants this moment to go on forever. She says…

“Tell me a story, Joel… Tell me something about you that I don’t know.”

“What kind of story?” [he says]

“A true one.”

My mother warned me once when I was a teenager never to trust a man who said I didn’t deserve him. I probably ignored her then. Now, many years later, I can’t help but to think of her.

There’s something shifty about Joel. Hadley can’t see it, because she’s blinded (in a believable way) by her feelings for this mysterious man, but the reader can see it. And the author does a great way of conveying that Hadley’s spidey sense was probably tingling, but everything (else) was just so perfect about this moment: the ski chalet, roaring fire, couple-in-love normalcy.

We just can’t quite put our finger on why he’s so shifty.

What do you think about today’s quote? Has your mother ever warned you of a person who says something like that?


The rules of participation are simple: Pick “a favorite line from your book boyfriend to his heroine. Keep in mind these are direct quotes from dialogue in a book.” Chapter Break — the masterminds behind this fabulous idea — has a whole list of quotes that date back to 2013! Bloggers Commenting Back

You can add add your favorite line in the comments below this post–or add a link to your own blog post in the comment below.


The Aspiring Author's Guide: Write Your Marketing Strategy by C.T. LunaIt’s been a minute since I last posted a #TWHST meme, because I have been busy. Yes, dear friends, I have published my first book (nonfiction) about designing a book marketing strategy. You can read all about it right here, or you can visit Amazon and buy it there.

There are links on this page that will lead you to They are affiliate links. Because I am an Amazon Affiliate, if you decide to make a purchase on Amazon as a result of clicking the link, I receive a small commission from your purchase. Find out more about affiliate links here. Thanks for your support. 

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